Wednesday, January 02, 2008

faecbook=usenet+graphical sugar coating

so i've been social networking - i admit it - i've got acounts on half a dozen ,and have tried lots of the fancy applications (e..g compare the length of your )

about 10 years ago (or more) I tried a different experiment - i tried to read the last ten posts on all of the usenet newsgroups (a.k.a. bulletin boards_ that were live at UCL at the time - and then respond meaningfully to at least 1 message per board, in a 24 hour period. I got a lot of flames. Nevertheless, the experiment worked, and I have never read or contributed to a bboard knowingly since (oh, sure some email lists are also mirrored on newsgroups - that doesnt count)

Not only is the signal to noise on news (and facebook) very very bad - the interrupt rate just for meta-data is completely insane - noone could seriously have a RL and take part in more than a modicum of things in these spaces. Basically, though, the main conclusion I Have is that facebook (and all the others) add very little to Usenet beyond a fancy Graphical User Interface (a bit like
the web didn't add a whole lot to the Internet except nice brosers, at least until the advent of search engines)

For budding entrepreneurs out there then, what is the "search engine" killer app for social networking sites??? it aint obvious. of course we already have nearly unbrearable amounts of advertising:)

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misery me, there is a floccipaucinihilipilification (*) of chronsynclastic infundibuli in these parts and I must therefore refer you to frank zappa instead, and go home